Publications by authors named "D Abigail Renegar"

10 Publications

Toxicity of two representative petroleum hydrocarbons, toluene and phenanthrene, to five Atlantic coral species.

Mar Pollut Bull 2021 Aug 3;169:112560. Epub 2021 Jun 3.

Nova Southeastern University, Halmos College of Arts and Sciences, Dania, FL, USA.

Coral reefs are keystone coastal ecosystems that can be exposed to petroleum hydrocarbons from multiple sources, and when selecting spill response methods to limit environmental damages, corals represent one of the highest valued resources for protection. Because previous research to characterize the sensitivity of coral species to petroleum hydrocarbon exposures is limited, a continuous-flow passive dosing system and toxicity testing protocol was designed to evaluate the acute effects of two representative petroleum compounds, toluene and phenanthrene, on five coral species: Acropora cervicornis, Porites astreoides, Siderastera siderea, Stephanocoenia intersepta, and Solenastrea bournoni. Using analytically confirmed exposures, sublethal and lethal endpoints were calculated for each species, and used as model inputs to determine critical target lipid body burdens (CTLBBs) for characterizing species sensitivity. Further, quantification of the time-dependent toxicity of single hydrocarbon exposures is described to provide model inputs for improved simulation of spill impacts to corals in coastal tropical environments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2021.112560DOI Listing
August 2021

Species sensitivity assessment of five Atlantic scleractinian coral species to 1-methylnaphthalene.

Sci Rep 2021 01 12;11(1):529. Epub 2021 Jan 12.

Nova Southeastern University, Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography, Dania, FL, USA.

Coral reefs are keystone coastal ecosystems that are at risk of exposure to petroleum from a range of sources, and are one of the highest valued natural resources for protection in Net Environmental Benefit Analysis (NEBA) in oil spill response. Previous research evaluating dissolved hydrocarbon impacts to corals reflected no clear characterization of sensitivity, representing an important knowledge gap in oil spill preparedness related to the potential impact of oil spills to the coral animal and its photosymbiont zooxanthellae. This research addresses this gap, using a standardized toxicity protocol to evaluate effects of a dissolved reference hydrocarbon on scleractinian corals. The relative sensitivity of five Atlantic scleractinian coral species to hydrocarbon exposure was assessed with 48-h assays using the reference polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon 1-methylnaphthalene, based on physical coral condition, mortality, and photosynthetic efficiency. The threatened staghorn coral Acropora cervicornis was found to be the most sensitive to 1-methylnaphthalene exposure. Overall, the acute and subacute endpoints indicated that the tested coral species were comparatively more resilient to hydrocarbon exposure than other marine species. These results provide a framework for the prediction of oil spill impacts and impact thresholds on the coral animal and related habitats, essential for informing oil spill response in coastal tropical environments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-80055-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7804185PMC
January 2021

A multi-taxonomic framework for assessing relative petrochemical vulnerability of marine biodiversity in the Gulf of Mexico.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Apr 16;763:142986. Epub 2020 Oct 16.

Department of Marine Biology, Texas A&M University at Galveston, 200 Seawolf Pkwy, Galveston, TX 77553, USA.

A fundamental understanding of the impact of petrochemicals and other stressors on marine biodiversity is critical for effective management, restoration, recovery, and mitigation initiatives. As species-specific information on levels of petrochemical exposure and toxicological response are lacking for the majority of marine species, a trait-based assessment to rank species vulnerabilities to petrochemical activities in the Gulf of Mexico can provide a more comprehensive and effective means to prioritize species, habitats, and ecosystems for improved management, restoration and recovery. To initiate and standardize this process, we developed a trait-based framework, applicable to a wide range of vertebrate and invertebrate species, that can be used to rank relative population vulnerabilities of species to petrochemical activities in the Gulf of Mexico. Through expert consultation, 18 traits related to likelihood of exposure, individual sensitivity, and population resilience were identified and defined. The resulting multi-taxonomic petrochemical vulnerability framework can be adapted and applied to a wide variety of species groups and geographic regions. Additional recommendations and guidance on the application of the framework to rank species vulnerabilities under specific petrochemical exposure scenarios, management needs or data limitations are also discussed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.142986DOI Listing
April 2021

Measured and predicted acute toxicity of phenanthrene and MC252 crude oil to vertically migrating deep-sea crustaceans.

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2020 Dec 12;27(36):45270-45281. Epub 2020 Aug 12.

Geochemical and Environmental Research Group, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, 77845, USA.

Deep-water column micronekton play a key role in oceanic food webs and represent an important trophic link between deep- and shallow-water ecosystems. Thus, the potential impacts of sub-surface hydrocarbon plumes on these organisms are critical to developing a more complete understanding of ocean-wide effects resulting from deep-sea oil spills. This work was designed to advance the understanding of hydrocarbon toxicity in several ecologically important deep-sea micronekton species using controlled laboratory exposures aimed at determining lethal threshold exposure levels. The current study confirmed the results previously determined for five deep-sea micronekton by measuring lethal threshold levels for phenanthrene between 81.2 and 277.5 μg/L. These results were used to calibrate the target lipid model and to calculate a critical target lipid body burden for each species. In addition, an oil solubility model was used to predict the acute toxicity of MC252 crude oil to vertically migrating crustaceans, Janicella spinacauda and Euphausiidae spp., and to compare the predictions with results of a 48-h constant exposure toxicity test with passive-dosing. Results confirmed that the tested deep-sea micronekton appear more sensitive than many other organisms when exposed to dissolved oil, but baseline stress complicated interpretation of results.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-10436-5DOI Listing
December 2020

Passive dosing yields dissolved aqueous exposures of crude oil comparable to the CROSERF (Chemical Response to Oil Spill: Ecological Effects Research Forum) water accommodated fraction method.

Environ Toxicol Chem 2018 11 5;37(11):2810-2819. Epub 2018 Oct 5.

Geochemical and Environmental Research Group, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, USA.

The Chemical Response to Oil Spill: Ecological Effects Research Forum's water accommodated fraction procedure was compared with 2 alternative techniques in which crude oil was passively dosed from silicone tubing or O-rings. Fresh Macondo oil (MC252) was dosed at 30 mg/L using each approach to investigate oil dissolution kinetics, which was monitored by fluorometry as estimated oil equivalents (EOEs). Subsequent experiments with each dosing method were then conducted at multiple oil loadings. Following equilibration, test media were analytically characterized for polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) using gas chromatography (GC)-mass spectrometry and dissolved oil using biomimetic solid-phase microextraction (SPME). The results showed that equilibrium was achieved within 72 h for all methods. Measured PAH concentrations were compared with oil solubility model predictions of dissolved exposures. The concentration and composition of measured and predicted dissolved PAHs varied with oil loading and were consistent between dosing methods. Two-dimensional GC compositional data for this oil were then used to calculate dissolved toxic units for predicting MC252 oil acute toxicity across the expected range of species sensitivities. Predicted toxic units were nonlinear with loading and correlated to both EOE and biomimetic SPME. Passive dosing methods provide a practical strategy to deliver and maintain dissolved oil concentrations while avoiding the complicating role that droplets can introduce in exposure characterization and test interpretation. Environ Toxicol Chem 2018;37:2810-2819. © 2018 SETAC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/etc.4263DOI Listing
November 2018
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